The mausoleum stands at the end of an avenue of cherry trees (formerly laurels, yews and firs). It was built in the Norman style to match that of the original castle. The exterior of the building is relatively plain but inside it has a theatrically contrived sequence of spaces leading up to the monumental tomb of Elizabeth Howard at the far end. This was designed by Matthew Cotes Wyatt and incorporates a marble figure of the Duchess, carved in the round, rising towards the cloud-filled heavens from which the four infants who had pre-deceased her lean down holding out their arms. Yellow, violet, blue and orange glass in openings concealed in the roof and walls splash the monument with vivid patches of colour.
Benjamin Dean Wyatt and Phillip William Wyatt
Grade II* (England and Wales)
The mausoleum was built by John Henry Manners, 5th Duke of Rutland, following the death of his wife, Elizabeth Howard (1780-1825), daughter of the 5th Earl of Carlisle. After its construction, most of the 18th century monuments in Belton Church were moved to the mausoleum which then became the family’s main place of burial.
BoE: Leics (1984), 101;
H Colvin, A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects (1995), 1104-5;
G Headley and W Meulenkamp, Follies (1990) 288;
Shell Guide: Leics (1970), 30;
N Penny, Church Monuments in Romantic England (1977), 57, fig. 39.
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